Ris­ing Sun shuts out Havre de Grace


Spe­cial to the Whig

— Ris­ing Sun earned an 11-0, five-in­ning vic­tory over Havre de Grace in Ju­nior Base­ball Dis­trict 5 ac­tion at North East Lit­tle League on Mon­day.

With the win, Ris­ing Sun emerged from the loser’s bracket and will now face Elk­ton in Wed­nes­day’s cham­pi­onship game.

Ris­ing Sun got off to a slow start in the first in­ning when Havre de Grace start­ing pitcher Bray­den Grusz struck out the first two bat­ters and re­tired the third with a pop out.

But Ris­ing Sun was just as ef­fec-


tive as their op­po­nents, as pitcher Jared Stan­ley struck out three in a row after walk­ing the first bat­ter.

It was in the se­cond in­ning where the bats for Ris­ing Sun ex­ploded, rat­tling off eight runs.

Luke Hamm was able to break the dead­lock after he crushed the ball into deep left field, bring­ing in two runs.

It was busted open again after Ben Gilcher, J.J Psen­ic­ska, John Valen­tine, Stan­ley and Rob­bie Stick­ley all recorded con­sec­u­tive RBIs to put the game out of reach for Havre de Grace.

That elec­tric se­cond in­ning con­sisted of Ris­ing Sun bat­ting around in or­der, get­ting hits off of solid bat con­tact, mov­ing run­ners around the bases via steals and smart base run­ning. The team also ben­e­fited from the walks is­sued by Havre de Grace.

Havre de Grace was never able to an­swer the big in­ning, as it was held score­less the en­tirety of the game due to Ris­ing Sun’s stel­lar pitch­ing and de­fen­sive per­for­mance, led by Stan­ley and re­lief pitcher Nate Hus­felt.

The game ended after the fifth in­ning due to the tour­na­ment’s 10-run rule after five in­nings.

Ris­ing Sun will now ad­vance and re­match Elk­ton, the same team that beat it ear­lier in the tour­na­ment.

In that game, Ris­ing Sun sur­ren­dered 14 walks.

“You can’t win games if you walk 14 guys,” Ris­ing Sun head coach Clay­ton Gilcher said.

Gilcher also spoke on his team’s all-around dom­i­nance and ef­fort to­ward knock­ing off Havre de Grace.

“One of the goals today was to hit a lot bet­ter,” Gilcher said. “Another goal was for pitch­ers to throw strikes, so I re­ally think that helps our mo­men­tum go­ing into Wed­nes­day’s game.”

Gilcher said this team nick­named them­selves “The Elim­i­na­tors” after the loss to Elk­ton, giv­ing the club much-needed mo­ti­va­tion to go out and dom­i­nate games lead­ing to the cham­pi­onship match-up with their county foe.

“When you lose that first game, you’re now the first team in the losers’ bracket,” Gilcher said. “We want to elim­i­nate ev­ery­body out of the tour­na­ment. That’s the goal.”

Stan­ley, who dom­i­nated on both the mound and at the plate, said hit­ting the ball and play­ing qual­ity de­fense is the key to keep­ing up the club’s suc­cess.

“We just have to keep steady and keep hot,” Stan­ley said.

Stan­ley also men­tioned that the cham­pi­onship game against Elk­ton will not be viewed as a re­venge game in his eyes.

“I’m just try­ing to play base­ball,” Stan­ley said. “it’s not a per­sonal thing, It’s just play­ing base­ball.”


Elk­ton pitcher Rea­gan Con­nell de­liv­ers to the plate dur­ing a game in the Se­nior Soft­ball State Tour­na­ment in Cam­bridge.

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